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SEC fines Lexington firm $200,000

A Lexington investment firm, BTS Asset Management Inc., has agreed to settle charges with federal regulators over misleading advertising about its performance for a $200,000 penalty.

According to the Securities and Exchange Commission’s order, made public Wednesday, BTS from the 1990s to 2010 advertised that it had suffered “no down years” in its high-yield bond fund program since 1981.

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The claim was based on buy and sell orders by the firm on one of its funds, or on a composite of funds, the SEC alleged.

The firm was aware that half of its clients had lost money in 2004, regulators alleged, and yet continued to market the funds as never having fallen in value.

BTS neither admitted to nor denied the charges.

BTS, which manages about $1.5 billion in assets, agreed to hire an independent compliance consultant in addition to paying the penalty.

Beth Healy can be reached at
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